Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield
U.S. Representative to the United Nations
September 22, 2021
Thank you, Mr. President. And let me thank you all for joining us today to participate in the COVID-19 Summit, as we collectively work to end this pandemic. This Administration is grateful to be working alongside you. And let me start by echoing what the President made clear: Because this pandemic is global, none of us is safe until everyone is safe. Only a truly global response can meet and defeat this threat.
After all, the world has learned the hard way that global health isn’t only about viruses and disease. It touches every aspect of life itself. Economies have collapsed. Gender-based violence has spiked. Millions of children have lost valuable education time and many – particularly girls – may never return to school.
The pandemic has disrupted people’s lives and livelihoods in ways it will take us years – maybe even decades – to fully comprehend. We have to come together to vaccinate the world, stop this pandemic, and build a global ecosystem that is well-equipped to prevent, detect, and respond to outbreaks so we’re ready for the next pandemic.
That is what this Summit is all about. Gathered here, we have the people, organizations, and knowledge necessary to put COVID in the past.
So, let’s share our experiences, our expertise, our best practices. Let’s bring our funding and our technology to bear. And let’s work together through the WHO, COVAX, and the United Nations to vaccinate the world and make 2022 the year we learned that public health is absolutely essential to global security and safety.